Just like any other day, I woke up and I took a shower, went downstairs, made some coffee, and sat down and read some blog posts. But none the less, I try to make it a priority to learn! You will never grow if you stop learning.
Now, we are only 4 days into 2013 and some of us have already skipped, missed, or given up all together on 1 or more of our new years resolutions. I understand!!! Trust me, I understand. This doesn’t make us bad people. Nor does it disqualify us for leadership! Rather, it gives us a starting point. We know that we have failed with this one (maybe more) resolution already, but knowing this helps us to make plans to change this. As a leader, we need to learn how to utilize our time. We MUST learn how to take care of ourselves. We MUST learn how to balance personal, work, ministry, and spiritual life.
#1 MAKE GOALS!! If you are anything like me, you probably have goals. In fact, you have many goals (lose weight, exercise more, eat better, get married, buy a car, etc). We have no problem coming up with goals (hence the New Years Resolutions that you have already slouched on 4 days into it). The problem is NOT the goals, it’s the follow through! Here are a couple suggestions:
– Write down exactly what your goal is (Get married).
– Write out the “do’s” (get tux, pay for honeymoon, etc)
– Find someone: Show them your goals, your “do’s”, and then ask them to hold you accountable. (This is the hardest part!) Do NOT have this be someone who will “forget” or will “let you live your own life.” These kind of people do NOT help you reach your goal. You want to be productive, so find someone who will encourage you along the way.
# 2 GIVE YOUR TIME A PURPOSE!! This sounds weird, but in America we waste soo much time. One study found that the average American wastes 2 hours a day at WORK! (That’s at work!) As a Christian, our goal should be to love, honor, and serve God & others with our time, resources, and energy.
What if we gave our time a purpose? What if instead of “family time” we defined that a little more? Is it family time for the purpose of creating memories, having fun, etc? Give your time a purpose!!!
#3 LEVERAGE THE ‘ME’ TIME!! I have what I call the “ME” time. This is the time of day when I am at my best. I find that I am best in the morning. This is when I do my best thinking, writing, learning! So first things first figure out when your “ME” time is. THEN……Schedule “ME” time! I don’t plan to do my writing at night, however there are times when I have a thought and just need to write. LEVERAGE your time! Do NOT fight it! We are soo compartmentalized that we restrict ourselves often. Have a regular time that works best for you to think, grow, learn, and study. But if you find yourself doing good outside of your “ME” time, then roll with it. LEVERAGE that time!
#4 TAKE NAPS!! Yep, your heard me right! I have never been a nap person. Even as a kid I can remember my mom wanting to lay me down for a nap. She would lay with me (thinking that would get me to nap). But after about 5 minutes (or whenever she fell asleep) I would get up, go put on a movie, play with my GI Joes, or play video games. I have NEVER really been a nap kind of person. Until I came across a post by Michael Hyatt on napping last semester when I was at Multnomah. I did an experiment. I started taking a nap every day. There were days I noticed that it helped, and days I didn’t. However, it didn’t hurt me to nap. Nor did I waste time. Rather than watching a movie, or talking with friends (intentionally for 20 min but more like 1 hour) I napped for 20, and then got started on homework until dinner time. It can’t hurt, I need to get back into this.
#5 GET 8 HOURS OF SLEEP!!! When I was in college, it was not uncommon for many students to pull all nighters, or to get 2-4 hours of sleep a night. In fact, many of us found it to be an honor to get less sleep than the others and still function. (STUPID I KNOW). However, I can NOT do that any more! (at least not on a regular basis). My senior year at Multnomah, I got myself in the habit of sleeping 8 hours. I found I was less irritable, more productive, and I was able to get homework done in 3 hours that I was previously doing with 8 hours. Bottom line: GET SLEEP. We live in a culture that constantly has stuff for us to do (concerts, meetings, movies, dates, etc), and we often fill in ALL of our time. Yet we never take care of our bodies. Our bodies need to rest. I try to go to bed on time, get 8 hours of sleep. I try to never settle for less than 6 (because there are those out of your control circumstances).